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5 ways visualisers enhance classroom learning

Visualisers – Take a closer look…

13/08/2020

The visualiser has been around for some time; however, recent events have seen a surge in the use of visualisers in classrooms. The equipment is used to project a high definition image of what is being viewed through the visualiser lens to a central screen, which includes a realm of other features such as video recording, time-lapse, and more.

If adopted and used effectively the visualiser will prove to be a very helpful tool in helping students maximise their learning and improve engagement in science as well as many other applications.

1. Enhanced Teaching

A perfect tool for teaching science. The visualiser will enable you to…

  • Show what is going on under the microscope to the whole class

  • Share live videos and experiments

  • Record time-lapse videos

    Such as acid rain on cress seeds, fast-growing plants, or eggs hatching – filming over a few days then enabling teachers to talk through the entire process.

  • Demonstrate and explain

    e.g. the anatomy of plants.

  • Film practical work using a range of materials

  • Zoom in on fundamental elements of a material, technique, or process

As well as the functionality above, the equipment will enable teachers to try new techniques that will improve productivity and save teaching time. One of the biggest benefits is using a visualiser to support peer and self-assessment to provide Live Feedback – enabling teachers to give on the spot, real-time feedback of student works. Demonstrating the correct way of doing something or the correct answer, then getting students to amend their work there and then saves teaching time, reduces marking time, and will improve both productivity and comprehension.

Demonstrating an example of what something ‘should’ look like is an excellent method for getting students to collaborate and discuss what they like. This can work well the other way, asking students what they think could be improved? Work can be presented anonymously if preferred.

It is proven that showcasing students top performing work on screen and to the entire class can have extremely positive effects on building confidence and motivation to learn, work well and can even increase self-efficacy.

2. Enhanced Learning

An aid to focusing…

Cognitive Load Theory considers the working memory and how students learning can slow or stop completely if presented with too much information – causing them to ‘overload’ because the brain can no longer process all information being given.  If given irrelevant information whilst learning it can overload and clog the working memory, meaning they will remember the irrelevant parts rather than the fundamental information – this is known as the Redundancy Effect.  The visualiser helps to eliminate this because it removes the unnecessary information that can constrain concise learning through other tools such as PowerPoint presentations.

Enabling teachers to focus on emphasising on important information that students need to learn – ultimately replacing irrelevant information from focus and replacing it with key learning outcomes. This organised and structured way of teaching will help children absorb information that is then transferred and stored to the long-term memory, resulting in easy recall when they need it.

Introducing the use of visualisers is also known to help with the development of students metacognitive learning. Enabling teachers to develop their teaching techniques and science practicals clearly and in real-time, encourages problem-solving and answering questions raised, ultimately resulting in students gaining knowledge and of the topic and strategy which means they will be much more likely to transfer this knowledge to other problems of a similar nature.

Addressing all learning styles… getting the best out of everyone!

You will be aware that there are several different styles when it comes to learning and the learning style of an individual child will vary across four main types:

Kinesthetic learners

Learn better through the tense of touch, through hands-on experiences and rehearsal.

Audio learners

For audio learners sound and music are the biggest stimuli for absorbing and retaining information.

Visual learners

Stimulated by the sense of sight, visual learners will learn more effectively through imagery, pictures, and spatial learning.

Reading/writing

For these types of learners the act of reading and writing will help them learn better than any other sensory learning style.

Students may be solely aligned to one of the above learning styles, however, in many cases children will learn through a few styles with one being more predominant. The visualiser tackles all four learning styles through one tool, keeping students of all abilities engaged throughout lessons.

3. An Innovative Solution enabling Safe Teaching

COVID-19 has taken the world by storm, with infections still active in the population. Even though restrictions are easing, it is still crucial that we reduce risk where possible and the use of a visualiser in classrooms is an excellent solution for distance learning and minimising crowding. Reducing group work in regards to a physical space doesn’t mean you have to reduce the opportunities for collaboration between your students – in fact considering all of the benefits spoke about earlier in the blog, it can be used as a tool for encouraging collaborative learning. It does not mean students can’t present their findings at the front of the class or even via video for other students to share and join in the conversation, with or without teacher intervention.

4. Perfect for Practical Science

Due to the incredibly high resolution of the Joyusing classroom visualisers, you can zoom in really closely, highlighting fine detail not visible to the naked eye. If you are using picture sources or stimulus, or even doing an activity like dissecting, reacting chemicals or electronic circuitry, having the capability to highlight details to students opens up a whole extra world of discovery.

Whereas previously, you may have used static images or huddled them around a table, using your visualiser to zoom in on details and project them means that you can pick out details that were previously difficult to access.

Timstar has developed a selection of quick and easy science experiments and worksheets for you to use with your visualisers. Download your free visualiser practicals below.

5. Share Multi-functional Technology

Although a fundamental piece of equipment when it comes to demonstrating and recording science practicals, the visualiser can be used across most, if not all subjects. It allows the teacher to model, demonstrate, give live feedback and marking, time-lapse and record with to the whole class quickly and easily. Tried and tested by teachers across all subjects and works perfectly in any lesson. Sharing best practices and resources across the school means it is an excellent whole school purchase but is also great for sharing live videos and experiments with other schools.

An investment in this equipment by one department can be shared and enjoyed by colleagues across the school.

Want training on setting up your visualiser experiments in school?

Timstar’s ASE Green Tick approved workshop will take you through set up and demonstration of the experiments, plus handy worksheets for all experiments – perfect for you to take away and apply in your school laboratory.

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